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New Year Resolutions for Improved Mental Health

Representational image. (AFP Relaxnews)

Representational image. (AFP Relaxnews)

Mental health is a central part of our lives and having resolutions that facilitate it could only be a step forward towards better living.

As we bid adieu to 2019, let’s take some time to go back to all the resolutions we planned last year but could not follow through. Be it promising ourselves that we will try reducing a few inches across the equator or saying we will read a fresh book every month, there are resolutions which honestly, are never met.

However, something we can do is aim towards a better mental health. Mental health is a central part of our lives and having resolutions that facilitate it could only be a step forward towards better living.

There is obviously a lot of pressure in creating that perfect New Year resolution list, but fret not, we have tried to come up with a few simple and adaptable solutions to help you put a full stop to that never-ending list of yours.

Following is a set of resolutions that will definitely foster your mental health:

Socializing and contributing

Evidence suggests that engaging in social activities can improve your mental condition manifold. Putting a smile on someone’s face gives you inner peace and happiness. It aids in feeling better about you to begin with. Research has frequently shown that socializing can be especially beneficial and protects people from depression and acute stress.

Contact with nature

A popular research has revealed that rural areas experience lower mental illness rates compared to urban cities. A study published in Dtsch Arztebl Int. found that the risk for serious mental illness is generally higher in cities compared to rural areas. Spending some time with nature can heal one faster than expected. One can take his/her pet for a walk or just take a stroll in the park these can result in lasting psychological benefits.

Self care

Plan some ‘me time’ for yourself. There is a difference between self-obsession and self-care. As Dwayne Johnson had once aptly said that ‘Nobody can take care of you like you can’. Try to permanently block out few hours on a regular basis. Listen to your choice of music, take an Epsom salt bath or curl up with your favourite book.

Move your body

There is a very thin line of difference between physical health and mental well-being. Exercise releases endorphins in the brain, which can help uplift your mood instantly. Make an effort to take some time to perform physical activities. A study published in The Primary Care Companion To The Journal Of Clinical Psychiatry found that exercise helps in improved sleep and improved mood as well among other benefits.

Reduce Gadget use

Excessive screen time can ruin the sleep cycle and increase the chances of depression. Read a book instead of scrolling over your phones. Log out of social media and find some time to spend with friends and family. A study published in BMC Public Health found that high frequency of mobile phone use at baseline was a risk factor for mental health outcomes at 1-year follow-up among the young adults.

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first published:December 31, 2019, 12:02 IST